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Dissertation

Attitudes toward evidence-based practices for traumaimpacted American Indian/Alaskan Native populations: Does the role of culture even matter?

August 2020

Abstract

American Indian and Alaskan Native (AI/AN) people experience trauma at disproportional rates compared to the general U.S. population. Despite highly supported evidence-based trauma treatments among majority groups, questions remain regarding whether they address culturally-based attitudes, values, and behaviors necessary to promote change and recovery within AI/AN communities. Minimal data exists on practitioner attitudes towards existing standards of care and areas for continued development. This study details the results of a national online survey of mental health practitioners (N = 103 providers) working with AI/AN trauma-impacted populations from a diverse range of clinical settings, theoretical orientations, and years of training through a mixed methods design. Results indicated that practitioner training characteristics (e.g., level of education, clinical experience, and confidence in using evidence-based practices) and cultural characteristics (e.g., ethnicity, identification with Western values) were significant predictors of evidence-based practice (EBP) attitudes. Additionally, overall attitudes toward EBPs were found to be a significant predictor of perceived need for culturally-informed EBPs, with 88% of practitioners reporting a lack of cultural sensitivity in current standards of care. These findings are presented within the context of efforts to increase the development of culturally-grounded models of healing for AI/AN communities and implications for clinical training, research, and dissemination of findings to help facilitate necessary policy change.

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Knowlton_Charlie_PhD_SGP_2020.pdf
7 Oct 2020
Public
1.34 MB